The student news site of Edwardsville High School

Tiger Times

The student news site of Edwardsville High School

Tiger Times

The student news site of Edwardsville High School

Tiger Times

Freshman Phenom Sophie Shapiro: Triple the Sports, Triple the Triumph

Zach Kennett
Sophie Shapiro shoots and scores against Collinsville High School.

In the realm of high school athletics, freshman Sophie Shapiro manages three sports: juggling the demands of basketball, track and tennis, all while navigating the challenges of her first year in high school. 

“A lot has changed since high school started,” Shapiro said. “Homework and grades became a bigger priority for me than they were in middle school [and] that made fitting in time to work outside of practice harder to come by.”

It’s one thing to just play three sports, but it’s another to succeed in every single one. Shapiro currently has a state championship title for the 100-meter hurdles, the 400-meter dash and the 4×4 race, along with a third-place state finish as a part of the Liberty basketball team. 

Shapiro’s love for sports began with soccer, then she slowly picked up basketball and track.

“I’ve been interested in sports since I was very little, mostly because of my mom and how much she pushed me to try new activities,” Shapiro said. “My parents have put me in many sports for a long time and I [have] always enjoyed it, so I haven’t stopped.”

Shapiro’s key to success is simple: “Put in the time, put in the work.” 

“My training routine consists of a lot of conditioning and workouts. Aside from practices after school, I go to the gym often to shoot by myself and sometimes with my younger brother,” Shapiro said.

Her talent does not go unnoticed. 

“I think [Shapiro] is just very athletic naturally, she has a natural athleticism that you really can’t teach. Either a person has it or they don’t,” tennis coach Kirk Schlueter said. “I think that if you watch the way that she runs or the way that she moves in athletic situations, that’s very obvious.”

Shapiro began playing tennis less than six months ago and has already earned herself a top junior varsity spot. According to her doubles partner Kierstynn Fisher, the two of them played No. 7 doubles on the team. 

“She had never played tennis before and then she was playing with me and she was great,” Fisher said. “She was so supportive and positive.”

In addition to having natural athleticism, Shapiro’s mindset and attitude play a big role in her success. 

“She is extremely athletic and has a ton of energy all the time, so she never stops,” teammate Molly Peel said. “But she is also very positive and I’ve never seen her get down on herself.”

Shapiro is further proof that qualities like enthusiasm, coachability, and a competitive spirit play a crucial role in shaping exceptional team players.

“I think she has a real willingness to be coached and she wants to get better. She seeks feedback and she’s very competitive and that goes a very long way as well,” coach Schlueter said.

However, the most significant influence on Shapiro’s skill comes from her support system. 

“[They] play a vital role in my life. I have amazing teammates and coaches who I know I can count on and talk to,” Shapiro said. “My family is always there for me in any scenario and my siblings especially always have my back. They are my best friends and my biggest supporters. I try to be the same for them.”

About the Contributors
Veda Kommineni
Veda Kommineni, Staff Writer
Veda Kommineni is a first-year journalism student but has spent three years on the yearbook staff. Outside of class, Veda plays varsity tennis for Edwardsville, does robotics, and is the editor-in-chief- of the yearbook. Her favorite classes have always been relating to literature, and she can't wait to pursue journalism.
Zach Kennett
Zach Kennett, Sports Editor
Zach Kennett is a first-time journalism student and first-time member of the Claw. He currently serves as the co-editor-in-chief of The Tiger, which is the school’s yearbook. He formerly served as the managing editor. He has also won two sectional titles in scholastic journalism, with one being in news writing and the other being in sports writing. Zach enjoys spending his (dwindling) free time with his dogs, playing video games, cooking or driving his truck, Hank. Being a member of the Claw is important to him in that he was previously mentored by former Claw members and looks forward to leaving his mark on the publication.